While traveling and you’re sleeping, the location you put your head during the night could take up a significant portion of your budget. However, don’t fret because there are plenty of options for finding secure, affordable and cozy accommodations.
For us, traveling with kids doesn’t always mean choosing the most expensive options We want to get the most price for our budget. We’re not as keen on roughing it as we used be, but we need to cut costs.
What you do and where you decide to stay depends on several factors, including:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your style of travel and level of comfort
- How big is your team
- Your interests are important to you
Just remember that getting an offer of 15% off a room you don’t really like isn’t the same than paying full price for a place you do. Our goal is to help you save cash on accommodation and find a place you’re happy with.
As our family, we’ve shifted up our accommodation preferences over the years. For longer trips, we prefer apartments as they come with bedrooms that are separate from the kitchen, as well as laundry facilities. Plus, we can split the cost with our friends or families. But for short stays, we’re happy to stay in hotels or family-friendly hostels.
If you’re planning an extended journey around the globe, consider taking a longer trip to places where you can save more and reduce your expectations in countries that are more expensive.
Here are 18 tips for scoring great lodging deals:
Location, location, location!
It doesn’t make sense to pick a budget hotel in a location that is miles from all amenities and you need to spend extra on transportation. Find hotels in central locations near airports, public transportation and other things to do, like restaurants, the beach and parks.
Stay longer than one night
A lot of hotels offer discounts when you stay two or more nights. There are times when you can stay for four nights, and only pay for three.
Go to your hotel Sunday morning
Hotels are less busy on Sundays, which means you’re likely to get a bargain. Also, if you book on Sunday, you’ll avoid the lines at check-ins and outs on Fridays and Mondays.
The weekdays are the best days to be a part of your life.
In certain cities, such as Las Vegas, hotels are more affordable on weekdays than weekends. Also, try to stay away from the crowds and save some cash by traveling midweek.
Off-season is the best-season
It’s not a surprise that hotels are cheaper during off-season. If you can travel during the shoulder season (between high and low) you’ll cut costs, avoid crowds and still have decent conditions.
Compare the prices of different booking websites
Don’t just book through the first website you find. Compare the prices on multiple websites to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Sign up for loyalty programs
Many resorts and hotels have loyalty programs through which you can earn points and discounts on your next stay.
Pre-book or book last-minute
Sometimes, booking early can save you money, while other times, waiting till the very last moment may score you a discounted rate.
Do not be afraid of negotiating
If you are booking directly through a hotel or vacation rental, don’t be afraid to ask for a better rate or extra facilities. You never know, they may just agree!
Look for vacation rental deals
Vacation rentals, like apartments or houses, are an ideal option for groups or families. In many cases, they can be cheaper than booking multiple hotel rooms.
Benefit from credit card rewards
If you have a credit or debit card that has travel rewards, make use of these rewards to cover lodging and save money.
Check for hidden fees
Certain booking sites or hotels might charge additional fees for things like cleaning or resort fees, so be certain to read the fine print before making your booking.
Find discounts or promotions
A lot of hotels and vacation rental properties offer discounts or promotions for military personnel, students and AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the best bargains are found in smaller hotels, independent establishments or vacation rentals that aren’t as popular.
Look for pet-friendly options
If you’re planning a trip with a pet consider looking for accommodations that are pet-friendly. These places may offer discounts or special offers for guests with pets.
Utilize social media
A lot of hotels and vacation rental properties offer discounts or special offers that they promote via social media. So be sure to keep up with them via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
You can try a home-sitting job or a house-sitting
Housesitting, also known as home swapping, is the process of swapping houses with a different person, allowing you to live in their home while they stay in yours. This is a fantastic option to save money on accommodation while still being in your space.
Consider renting a campervan or RV
If you’re traveling with a group or family renting a campervan or RV is the best option to save on accommodation. Additionally, you’ll be able to explore different places and also have your own transportation in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents can often access discounts and special offers which aren’t accessible to the general public. Additionally, they are able to do the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
Booking a hotel, flight, and rental car as a package deal can sometimes save you money on each individual component.
Search for hostels
Hostels are a budget-friendly alternative for solo travelers as well as groups of travelers. In addition, with the rise of boutique hostels it is possible to find cozy, clean and safe alternatives.
Explore home-sharing platforms
Home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo provide more affordable and distinctive accommodation options, like staying in a private space in a homeowner’s home or renting a house for a large gathering.
As a bonus here are some helpful tips for finding cheap luggage:
Shop at discount retailers
Discount retailers such as T.J. Maxx, Ross and Marshalls often carry a selection of luggage at discounted prices. Make sure to look these stores up before purchasing at a department store that is more traditional.
Look for off-season sales
Like with accommodations, you can often find good deals on luggage during the seasonal sales or the off-season. This is especially true of retailers of travel and outdoor gear.
Buy used or refurbished
Consider buying used or used luggage. This can be a great method to save on high-end brands. You might be able to locate gently used luggage that is in excellent quality. Websites like Amazon and Ebay have good options and as well as local classifieds and garage sales.
In the end, finding affordable accommodations and cheap luggage does not need to mean you sacrifice security and comfort. If you do a little research and creativity it is possible to find an ideal place to stay within your budget as well as amazing discounts regarding luggage and luggage options for the next journey. By comparing prices by signing up to loyalty programs, making reservations early or last-minute, taking advantage of promotions and discounts, or trying alternative options like rental homes and home sharing platforms to stretch your budget further and enjoy your trip to the fullest.